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Grant Thornton: Red tape threatens to obstruct globalisation

By Rob Starr, Content Manager,

New research from the Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR) reveals that the number one barrier to international expansion reported by businesses globally is legislation and regulations. With the global economic recovery still tepid at best, lowering barriers to trade and foreign direct investment (FDI) could provide a boost to business growth prospects and help the global economy get back on a surer footing.

“Dynamic businesses are constantly looking for growth opportunities and expanding into different markets can boost business growth prospects through access to new consumers and new technologies. But mountains of regulations and legislation could prevent businesses considering overseas opportunities,” said  Ed Nusbaum, CEO of Grant Thornton International Ltd.” “Clearly every economy in the world has a different business operating environment so moving across borders will create challenges. And strong regulations and legislation can be a good thing, assuming they are designed to drive trade – not drive it away. That regulations and legislation are cited by businesses around the world presents a clear challenge to policymakers.”

These findings are drawn from the 2012 Grant Thornton Emerging markets report, which also ranks the 27 largest emerging economies in terms of the opportunity they offer for business investment using a range of economic indicators. As with the 2010 report, China tops the index, followed by India and Russia. Brazil has moved above Mexico into fourth place. The biggest movers include the ‘frontier economies’ of Indonesia, Chile, Nigeria and Peru


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